Over the years, I watched friends and ladies I love getting pregnant with ease. It never occurred to me that when the time comes, I may have to struggle with fertility issues.
Three years after we first started attempting to have a baby and one failed IVF procedure later, I look back at what happened and why we were never capable of conceiving naturally. Now, it’s easy for me to spot some of the common signs of infertility. At the time, I simply dismissed those and kept on hoping for the better.
Keeping track of your fertility involves having a good idea of how your body works and whether something’s out of sync. If you’re observant enough, you may spot some of the early signs of female infertility in time. The sooner you identify such issues, the easier it will be for you to find a solution/effective treatment. So, without further ado, here are some of the most common signs of female infertility.
Irregular periods don’t necessarily mean a fertility threatening condition. Some women have irregular periods but they do ovulate every single time. I’ll get to ovulation tracking in one of the upcoming articles. If you know that you’re ovulating, there’s no reason to worry. You’ll simply have to be careful when it comes to planning and scheduling baby making sessions.
Irregular periods, however, could be a sign of polycystic ovarian symptom (PCOS) or another condition that will affect your chances of conception. PCOS is characterized by at least a few anovulatory cycles and very often, it’s also linked to poor egg quality.
If your periods are irregular, you may want to schedule an appointment with your ob-gyn. That’s the best way to figure out whether they’re a sign of female infertility or simply a normal part of your physiology.
A Cycle that is Too Long or Too Short
Regular periods that, however, happen to be too long or too short could also be indicative of ovulation problems and fertility issues.
Every woman has a cycle of specific length. Normal cycles vary from 21 to about 35 days. If you have a shorter or much longer menstrual cycle than that, you’ll probably need to see your doctor. A physician may decide to track follicle development in an attempt to determine whether you’re ovulating regularly.
Heavy and Very Painful Periods
I’ve been having incredibly painful periods ever since I started getting them at the age of 12. The fact that I suffer from PCOS, however, surfaced at the age of 23. This is when my ovaries starting appearing in the traditional for PCOS way during ultrasound exams.
Periods that are excessively heavy or that leave you incapable of functioning for a day or two due to extreme pain are not normal. Usually, they’re indicative of a problem like PCOS, another endocrine or a hormonal issue. You don’t have to suffer silently, chances are that things will get better through the selection of the right treatment.
Signs of a Hormonal Issue
Female infertility could be caused by a hormonal imbalance. Hormones control nearly every aspect of our existence. If you’re experiencing an imbalance, chances are that you’ll soon spot some of the most common symptoms:
- Changes in your skin, the appearance of acne
- Inexplicable weight gain
- Loss of hair or the appearance of excessive amounts of body hair
- Changes in your libido or the complete loss of your sex drive
- Painful or unpleasant sex
A doctor will need to do a simple blood test to check your hormone levels and determine if there’s an issue. Hormone tests will usually have to be done within the first three days of your period (the first three days after you begin bleeding).
Inability to Get Pregnant within a Single Year
According to research, healthy couples should be capable of conceiving within one year of their first attempt. If it’s already been a year and you’re not pregnant yet, chances are that you’re experiencing a fertility issue. The period is taken down to six months for women over the age of 35. If you don’t get pregnant within the specified period, you’ll need to schedule a consultation with a fertility expert.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that nearly six percent of all women aged up to 44 have problems getting pregnant within a year of unprotected sex. In addition, 12 percent of women in the same age group can’t carry the pregnancy to term. As you can see, fertility issues in ladies aren’t that uncommon.
How about His Fertility?
The inability to get pregnant is caused by male infertility in as many cases, as it’s caused by female infertility. Even if you’re perfectly healthy and all of your tests come out fine, there’s still a risk of a male fertility issue.
So many men can’t accept the fact that they have a fertility problem. When going to the clinic, I met some women whose partners blamed them of being infertile without ever going for a medical checkup. Remember that infertility is a couple’s issue. To make sure that that your chances of conception are high, you’ll have to be both actively involved in the process.